IT'S been a race against the clock for the winners of this year's Echo Local Art Show to prepare for the biggest exhibition of their lives at Exeter's Royal Albert Memorial Museum.
Local art groups and societies were given the unique opportunity to have their work featured among acclaimed artists at the museum by entering the annual art competition.
Echo readers voted for their favourite and the winner was Hive, a group of three members.
Sam Harrison, Ian Harbour and Su Scotting established Hive two years ago and since then have been working hard putting on exhibitions in Devon.
Hive's biggest exhibition is the Echo Art Show which was unveiled this week and is on display until Wednesday, October 16.
Ian has been working furiously to make sure they had enough art work to hang in Gallery 20. Some of his paintings barely had time to dry before going on public view.
All three members specialise in different areas and subjects, providing visitors with a very varied and interesting exhibition.
Co-founder Sam Harrison, from St Leonard's, Exeter, has a degree in fine arts and works full-time as a civil servant. She said: "Between us we have just enough work to fill up the gallery space. I estimated how many pieces we would need, around 100, because I've only got small pieces. A lot of mine are only postcard size, but Ian's are much bigger paintings.
"Having bigger work against tiny work is good as it gives you a sense of different scales which looks interesting in a gallery space.
"When we heard the news we were all shocked and excited, and couldn't quite believe it. Then we realised how much work we had to do.
"Ian has been madly painting new work to go into the show ever since. He works mainly in acrylics and started off doing seascapes around Sidmouth. His focus is traditional subject matter, but his real passion is doodle paintings. He doodles a lot in his sketchbook and then turns them into paintings. Ian's work is also big, cheerful and bright. He is interested in animation and that comes out in his paintings."
Sam's work is very different and not just in terms of scale.
She said: "My work is mostly drawings using pen and ink. I've also done a couple of paintings because I've only just got back into painting on canvas after a break.
"I focus on all sorts of different subject matters, but I've done quite a lot of work based on old buildings such as Exeter Cathedral and its wood and stone carvings.
"I also like to paint interesting characters but it's hard getting people to come forward and give up a little of their time to be painted, so the one I've done is of myself as I'm available 24/7."
Hive's other founding member, Su, offers a mixture of painting, prints and drawing. Hive formed when Sam, Ian and Su worked together in a local office and were asked to arrange a display of artwork by staff.
They all loved art and were busy painting and drawing in their spare time so decided to get together and put on their own shows.
In 2011, they hired Birdwood House Gallery in Totnes for Hive's first exhibition, Collywobbles.
Sam said: "Working as a group helps us to spread the cost because we could not afford to put on solo shows. We also get so much from supporting each other. Ideas cross-pollinate and we occasionally find images popping up in each others' paintings!
"We have a strong artistic connection, but very individual styles. It's really special to be part of something that connects so many people through art. What gives us the biggest buzz is how much people enjoy themselves at our shows. It makes it all worthwhile."
Hoping for a good response to their new show, Sam said: "We've been really looking forward to see our work go on show at RAMM. It's a good confidence boost and if we get good feedback then it will encourage is to keep doing what we're doing."
Most of the work on view is for sale. Prints and cards will also be available to buy.